SA Market Wrap - July
By Craig Povey
This update is coming to you from the Eyre Peninsula (EP) in South Australia where timely opening rains got seeding underway early for the majority around mid-April. Since then however, it has been a case of mixed fortunes in regard to follow-up rainfall. The Lower EP has never looked better at this time of year. A combination of the early start, modern machinery combining with a past drought induced attitude to get the crop in as soon as possible and of course just enough rain to keep crops fresh and developing at record speed. Canola is beginning to flower as farmers dose their crops with a second round of nitrogen. Spraying is generally up to date with calm sunny days punctuating showers and providing regular opportunity to get on paddocks with minimal damage. We are yet to receive a “soaker” rain event though and when the Lower EP is not wet it is a usually an indication that Upper and Eastern EP is looking for rain. That is certainly the case this season with an absence of both strong southerly fronts or northerly tropical infeed. Parts of the Eastern EP are in their third straight year of drought, struggling to get a cover on the ground with several severe wind events that have cut off early growth. Central and Upper EP crops are in slightly better shape but need rain.
The local marketing space has seen little engagement from farmers as port based prices drift lower for both wheat ($275), barley ($220) and Canola ($575). Values of $300 for wheat, $250 for barley and $600 for canola are fresh in people’s minds and would be much more palatable to taking on forward sales risk given the lack of significant rainfall and the fading confidence from weather forecasters. With much of the eastern states in better condition I suspect buyers won’t need the full $25 increase on prevailing bids to create interest.
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